Assessment in English within the South African Outcomes-Based Education Approach
Hartzenberg, Susara Cornelia
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The old South African Education system was divided into education and training and mainly catered to the privileged few. The education system was teacher-centered and learners were mere passive participants. Evaluation was summative and consisted of a series of tests and examinations which dominated all classroom practices. In the English second language classroom contact time was taken up with rote-learning of language structures and learners were unable to implement their theoretical knowledge in practical situations. This could not continue as it led to a semi-skilled workforce and left millions of people illiterate. With the inception of OBE it was necessary that assessment be revised in order to change from a predominantly norm-referenced summative method of evaluation which mainly tested linguistic intelligence to a predominantly criterion referenced formative assessment in which a variety of methods, tools and techniques would be used to assess the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes acquired by learners in their attempt to achieve expected outcomes. The purpose of this study is to review the assessment methods of the traditional English Second Language classroom as well as the methods, tools and techniques of Outcomes-Based Assessment in order to determine their effectiveness as strategies in the development of the learner and in the achievement of outcomes.
- Humanities